Are There Any Dairy Products That Hurt Your Teeth More Than Helping?
Posted on 12/10/2018 by Brandon Cooley
|The advice out there for getting your proper dose of calcium is fraught with contradictions. On the one hand, most milks on the market are reinforced with Vitamin D to help ensure healthy bone (and teeth) growth.
On the other hand, milk is so nutrient rich (especially sugars) that it encourages bacteria growth, and while it is low in acidity, the lactic acid will eventually wear down tooth enamel.
It can be tough to weigh the pros and cons of regular dairy, but are there products out there that are without contest more harmful than beneficial?
Avoid Sour Cream
As the name suggests, sour cream is higher in lactic acid (which gives it its sourness) than most dairy products, which will pit teeth and wear them down quicker. While advocates are quick to point out the cornucopia of health benefits and nutrients in the product (especially calcium, phosphorous, and potassium, all good for your teeth), there exists a diverse range of healthier and more efficient alternatives out there that won't leave your gums screaming.
Add Low-Sugar Yogurt
While yogurt immediately calls to mind a rich, creamy, sweet dessert that wreaks havoc on teeth, there are actually many benefits to adding it to your diet – if done in moderation, and with consideration for your mouth.
Japanese dentist Dr. Yoshihiro Shimazaki found in a 2008 study submitted to the Journal of Periodontology that active culture yogurts (particularly natural Greek variants) can contribute probiotic care to your teeth, reducing bacteria buildup, preventing recession of the gumlines, and stabilizing your oral PH value. In this case, what's good for the gut is also good for the grin.
Just Soy No
Although arguably not a true dairy contender, soy milk is often praised as the best alternative for people who can't digest regular diary. This may be true for general health, but for dental health research indicates that your mouth naturally produces between 5x to 6x more acid breaking down soy milk compared to cow's milk, dramatically increasing the risk of cavities, plaque, and tooth decay.
While dairy won't necessarily ruin your smile, and is generally necessary for healthy teeth, there are certainly some that need to be avoided more than others. For the products we recommend, please feel free to contact our office!